Monthly Archives: November 2014

Ruby Snapper ( Etelis coruscans )

deep water snapper

Banjie’s Huge Snapper

Common Name:   Flame Snapper, Longtail Snapper, Longtailed Deepwater Snapper

Local Name  Maya-maya, Tikwi (Tagalog);  Sagisihon (Cebuano)

Max Size:  120 cm

Biodiversity: Marine, Reef Associated, Deep-Water

Depth:  90 – 400 m

Fishing Season:  All Year Long

Minimum Size LimitNone

Recommended Bait/Lures:  Fish, Squid

IUCN Red List Status:  Not Evaluated (NE)

The Ruby Snapper is one the prized fish found in deep water around the country.  These fish can be difficult to catch mainly because of the great depths at which they are found.  Anglers fishing for Ruby Snapper and other deepwater species often use electric reels to aid in the retreival of line.  Dropping a heavy weight down over 200m takes a long time to reel in and is tiring even when there is no fish on the other end.  Braided line is a must when fishing in deep water, called Deep Dropping.

The 27kg monster pictured above was caught very deep with a special winch reel.  They used a whole squid as bait and it took quite a while to bring the monster in.

Hairtail ( Trichiurus haumela )

Trichiurus auriga

Common Name:   Hairtail, Ribbon fish, Cutlass Fish, Belt Fish, Frost Fish

Local Name  Balila, Espada (Tagalog);  Diwit (Cebuano)

Max Size:  2 m (5 kgs )

Biodiversity: Marine, Benthopelagic,

Depth:  0 – 350 m

Fishing Season:  All Year Long

Minimum Size LimitNone

Recommended Bait/Lures:  fish, minnow lures

IUCN Red List Status:  Not Evaluated (NE)

 This is one of the stranger looking fish found in the seas of the Philippines. There are over 40 different species of cutlassfish in the world which all share a similar shiny, blade like appearance.  They silvery sides of this fish are so brilliant that the colors of the rainbow can be seen when a camera flash or sun light are reflected off it.

In the tperate seas these fish are known as frost fish because their appearance in late fall often corresponds with the coming of the frost. Here in the Philippines however we have noticed that they appear to be more prevalent in the months of Habagat or monsoon season. During this time schools of cutlassfish move closer to shore.

Surprisingly these fish readily take lures and so can be caught by Anglers fishing from piers and rocky coastlines. For some reason these fish seem to prefer red head lures and to feed at night.


Jay’s Hairtail caught in Bohol

Espada fish

The fearsome jaws of the cutlass fish

Tank Goby ( Glossogobius giuris )

glossogobius giuris

Common Name:   Goby,

Local Name  Biya(Tagalog);  Bunog (Cebuano)

Max Size:  50 cm

Biodiversity: Marine, Brackish, Freshwater

Depth:  0 – 30 m

Fishing Season:  All Year Long

Minimum Size LimitNone

Recommended Bait/Lures:  Shrimp, Small Fish and Worms

IUCN Red List Status:  Least Concern (LC)

The Tank Goby is one of the many species of small Goby found in the fresh, brackish and saltwaters of the Philippines. We have chosen to list it here for numerous reasons.  First the Tank Goby is one of the largest goby species that can be found in the Philippines reaching a length of up to 50 cm making them worthy of mention.  Also Biya, as they are known in the Tagolog regions, have a species place in the Tagalog cuisine and are considered a delicious food fish.  Biya are cooked fresh in a number of dishes and they are also salted and dried.

Biya in general are caught in rivers, lakes and even estuaries where they sit along the bottom waiting for prey to pass by.  They aggressively gobble up worms, shrimp, small fish and other baits that are lightly jigged off the bottom.  On average Biya are quite small however in estuaries and lakes anglers can find the larger ones.  Biya make for fun fish for kids to catch because of how aggressive they are and how numerous they are.

The Tank Goby bears resemblance to the Gudgeon fish which are also found through out the country.  The main distinguishing feature of the goby is its elongated body as compared to the shorter and more plump body of the gudgeon.

giant biya


Sonny’s Monster Biya from Laguna